Reaching a decision
Understanding how decisions are taken
Committee panels make decisions on whether or not a nurse or midwife is fit to stay on the register.
The decisions they make are not intended to punish the individual, but are made to safeguard the health and wellbeing of the public. Since 3 November 2008, new hearings have used the civil standard of proof.
There are three stages to the decision-making process.
- Are the facts proven or not proven?
- Is the fitness to practise of the nurse or midwife in question impaired?
- What actions are required to safeguard the health and wellbeing of the public?
When our committees consider what action to take, they will take into account other factors, such as:
- previous disciplinary action taken, and how the nurse or midwife in question has responded to this
- the availability of training and support
- staffing issues which may have affected performance (such as bullying, victimisation or insufficient staffing levels)
- unreasonable role demands.
The nurse or midwife concerned has the right to appeal the decision of the panel in the courts. The Professional Standards Authority (PSA) - previously known as the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) - also has powers to review decisions it believes to be lenient and refer these to court.
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